Former Southeast Asian (SEA) Games champion Veronica Domingo-Ryu settled for bronze in the prestigious 2017 US Open Tae kwon do Championships held recently at the Westgate Las Vegas Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Domingo-Ryu failed to defend her crown in the Ultra Sparring (33-45) Female A +67 kgs. after losing to American Sanaz Shahbazi in the semifinals via 1-4 decision.
The Filipina black belter made it to the Final Four by ousting American Anne Graham in the quarterfinals (2-1).
Promising jins Russell Jon Sembrano (Juniors Male A -51 kgs.) and Christine Bonoan (Juniors Female A -42 kgs.) won a silver each while Christopher Guzman added one bronze (Juniors Male A -51 kgs.) in their respective categories.
Domingo-Ryu dominated her category three times – in the 2013 edition in Las Vegas, in 2015 in Orlando, Florida, and in 2016 in Reno, Nevada – when she’s still representing the United States under a Florida-based tae kwon do team.
This year, Domingo-Ryu opted to don the national colors anew in all international tournaments as she aims to qualify to the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan.
“After a decade, it feels great and I am proud to represent and serve my country again,” said Domingo-Ryu, who won a bronze medal in the women’s 63 kgs. event of the 2006 Asian Games in Doha, Qatar – the last time she represented the Philippines in an international competition.
She also bagged a gold in the 2003 Southeast Asian Games in Hanoi, Vietnam and silver in the 2005 Manila SEA Games.
Domingo-Ryu is now preparing for big tournaments lined up this year including the 2017 World Tae kwon do Championships Ultra Sparring.